When this game was released, I was pretty skeptical about the entire concept of it. An immortal man hunting demons from hell, who can be dismembered and re-attach his limbs by rolling over them. The idea sounds perfect, right?! But, did this game hit the mark? Or does it fall to bits like the character?
NeverDead starts out introducing each character, letting us get to know just a bit about them. We only get an intro to the story of our main character, Bryce Boltzman. The once honorable demon fighter hunts the monsters down with his wife, Cypher. That is, until she gave her life to save his, while fighting the Demon King, Lord Asteroth. After the battle, Asteroth bestows an Evil Eye unto Bryce, giving him immortality (for reasons unknown to us). 500 years later, Bryce is still hunting demons, but now with his new partner, Arcadia Maximille. She is a cold and methodical demon killer who works with Bryce and keeps him in line.
The main story is pretty simple, at first. A 500-year-old demon hunter out for revenge and killing everything he can. The loss of his wife left him bitter and angry at the world, yet there are times his old, honorable ways do choose to appear. These ways especially shine when it comes to saving or helping out Arcadia. While the base of the plot is simple, it does thicken over the span of the game. From saving an uppity pop star from demons, to finding out a deep and troubling secret withheld long ago from Bryce, there are enough twists inside the game’s story to keep you involved. The cutscenes are a fun bonus as well, with good flow and graphics, they were always exciting to watch.
The one thing that really had me worried with this game was the graphics and style of it all. It’s a Konami product, so I had a general idea of what to expect. A tough, grunting guy with long spiky hair and the gorgeous blond partner in very “work appropriate” clothing. That aside, it wasn’t so cliché that I was forced to look away. The gameplay did get a bit repetitive due to your goals within the levels. Killing the same enemies throughout the entire story, using your blade to cut an obstacle in half, or just shooting your way out of any situation. It gets old.
The (somewhat) saving grace of this game was the puzzle situations it presented. Being an immortal means losing an arm or a leg over the course of a level. The developers integrated this into the puzzles, like using your
mechanics were creative and fun for a while, you can only do the same thing enough times before you get frustrated with it. It was a great idea that had potential, but more could have been added to really bring this to next level of gaming.
Altogether, NeverDead is rent worthy, at most. There is a decent amount of fun to be had from beheading yourself, not to mention the trash talking between characters can make you laugh for quite a while. The story is very simplistic, but not so simple that you’ll be bored. The action is the repetitive throughout the entire story, hacking, slashing, and shooting your way out. The idea behind this game was creative enough to intrigue, but fell a bit short.
I give NeverDead 3 “Rolling Heads” out of 5
by Luke Wyatt.